Happy Friday! Today is a new day. The Lord is with you. Do not lose faith. Trust Him. Enjoy today’s devotion and prayer.
Bible Verse – Acts 23:23-30 NLT
23 Then he called two of his centurions and ordered them, “Get ready a detachment of two hundred soldiers, seventy horsemen and two hundred spearmen[b] to go to Caesarea at nine tonight. 24 Provide horses for Paul so that he may be taken safely to Governor Felix.”
25 He wrote a letter as follows: 26 Claudius Lysias, To His Excellency, Governor Felix: Greetings. 27 This man was seized by the Jews and they were about to kill him, but I came with my troops and rescued him, for I had learned that he is a Roman citizen. 28 I wanted to know why they were accusing him, so I brought him to their Sanhedrin. 29 I found that the accusation had to do with questions about their law, but there was no charge against him that deserved death or imprisonment. 30 When I was informed of a plot to be carried out against the man, I sent him to you at once. I also ordered his accusers to present to you their case against him.”
Paul was about to be killed, but look at the favor he was given because of the Lord, but also because of his citizenship. Paul was escorted with the finest arm which was charged to protect him. – Won’t God Do It! God could have sent Heaven’s Armies to protect Paul, but instead he moved the heart and mind of an earthly man to dispatch his army and protect Paul.
Remember – Paul was about to be lashed because of the commanders orders and now we read the commander secured a safe passage for Paul, took credit for his safety and basically declared Paul innocent.
If I may put this into perspective, the prophet/judge Gideon from the Old Testament book of Judges was given instructions by the Lord. Gideon initially had 32,000 men and they were outnumbered 4 to 1. God told Gideon that he had too many men and Gideon’s men decreased to 300 and praise God – because of God, Gideon won the battle. God used 300 faithful men to win the battle against the Midianites.
Now in these verses we see the Lord at work and the commander certainly used more than 300 men to protect Paul. Let’s recap:
- two hundred soldiers,
- seventy horsemen, and
- two hundred spearmen
That was 470 men accompanying Paul and only Paul to ensure his safety.
Sisters and brothers, the men who were plotting against Paul were no match against the Lord. The Lord had great plans for Paul, which included this personal escort and protection. While Paul’s situation isn’t ideal, we can see the Lord – time and time again working things out in Paul’s favor.
Sisters and brothers, I don’t know the full details of your life or the things that you have or are struggling with, but will you take a step back and consider all the things God has or is working out in your favor?
To ponder on this weekend:
- Assess how the Lord has come through for you?
- Assess His faithfulness in the past.
- Praise Him in advance, because He will come through again – this time with you more mature in faith and thriving in trust.
Father God, we thank you for your mercy on our lives. Lord, you are so patient and loving toward us. Lord, even when we do not agree with what you are doing, we are more than grateful for the love that you have bestowed upon us and for your perfect ways. Lord, we desire to have faith, obedience and boldness like Paul and so many other godly brothers and sisters of the faith. Lord, continue to develop us so that we may be fully mature in your word, in our trust in you, and in our calling. Lord, speak to us this weekend and help us to assess and recognize all the areas in our lives where you have been faithful in the small and big things. Lord, lead us in – Jesus name, amen.
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